With Valentine's Day approaching, love is already on shop shelves and in the subconscious, so we might as well indulge in some romantic-themed reads. I certainly love reading about love, and not just soppy sentimental stories (although I am fond of them too), but books that actually explore love and relationships and offer poignant perspectives relevant to our own relationships. Here are five of my recommended reads about love that do just that:
'Essays on Love' by Alain de Botton Part novel, part essay - this is a love story written by a philosopher. De Botton analyses a relationship from first kiss to break up, through anxieties and arguments, intimacy and domesticity.
The narrator is a young architect who meets a girl called Chloe on a British Airways flight and the romance is unraveled from there in chapters with suitably erudite titles such as 'The Subtext of Seduction', 'Love or Liberalism' and 'Romantic Terrorism'. If that sounds a bit too academic, don't fear, it is accessible as well as clever. The storytelling is superb and the characters are engaging and easy to relate to.